Sunday, October 21, 2012

Billy Bragg, Woody Guthrie

OK, let's be honest here. If it weren't for Billy Bragg, I probably wouldn't have given Woody Guthrie the time of day. Depression era Dust Bowl American guitar folk music. Billy, with a bit of help from the Wilco lads took Woody's songs and breathed new life into them across 3 CDs with the Mermaid Avenue series.Thanks guys.

Billy Bragg's Dunedin show came and went. Pre show drinks at the Octagon with friends prior to trudging up the hill to the show saw us arrive at 8:08 for the 8pm show. Imagine our surprise to see the doors were closed and it had started! I seem to recall leaving the first show of his many years ago covered in sweat and beer. Man, how times have changed. We were allowed in between songs as the crowd applauded, phew!

I wasn't overly looking forward to the first half of the show made up of Woody Guthrie songs but Billy held all captive with song and story. The second half of the show was a whistle stop tour of his own songs and we loved them all. Lyrics were tweaked in some songs from Cold War themes to current struggles with a nod to Pussy Riot among others.

OK, that's enough Billy Bragg for a while for this blog, time to tack off in a new direction.. stand by folks.

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